Now that’s better . . .

20 02 2010

First off, did do a short run on Wednesday. But it was short, hilly, muddy and boring, so couldn’t be bothered to inflict it on you.

Today however, was glorious. So consider yourselves well and truly inflicted. Did the usual winter 9km loop in a fairly average time. But the sun was out, blue skies, no wind and fantastically clear air. From the top of Golden Cap I could easily see 20 miles or more west along the coast to Portland, and the same to the east past Lyme Regis and along round the bay. After a couple of months of cold grey days it was a real revelation. I reminder of what I really enjoy about running. Running on the coast paths is just the best thing ever. Yes, it was still muddy and a bit chilly to start, but in the sheltered spots with the sun on my back it could have been summer.

Started off a bit quick, set new records for the first three kilometers, and that’s despite five hours of sleep as I was up watching Amy Williams in the skeleton bob. Only really lost time on the muddy bits. So a good run. The sort that leaves you smiling.

So long run today, short one probably Tuesday, medium run next Friday, then a short run midweek before the Southbourne 10k the following Sunday. Really looking forward to that as I’ve said before, and really hope to run as close to 50 mins as possible.


Back on Track

8 12 2009

Managed to squeeze in a short run this morning after walking the boys to school and before the rain resumed. Wife’s got the car, so ran from home down to the beach (high tide, so no running on the beach), then up towards Catherston Leweston and back the same way. All on tarmac. Calf ached a bit halfway round, but seems ok now. Left knee got a bit painful near the end. Beginning to wonder if the body’s trying to tell me something? Not listening (puts fingers in ears).

Did 5.4km in 31m 6s, so 5m 45s per kilometer average. It might have been a short run, but it still contained 217m of ascent apparently. Next run will be sometime at the weekend depending on weather and painting duties.

Sound the All Clear

15 11 2009

After a day of battening hatches and generally lying low, today was remarkably runner friendly. My intention to go for a run yesterday was quickly abandoned, mainly due to storm force winds strong enough to blow a tree down and block the road. I actually went for a walk down to the beach as I had to go to the post office anyway, and the beach car-park was predictably a right mess. Fortunately it was low tide so I didn’t have to run any great risk, but as I was stood there at an angle of 45 degrees into the wind it did occur to me that maybe if I got hit by a bit of flying 2 by 4 hurtling off the beach, then it probably wouldn’t be good for my running plans. Where the car-park meets the beach there’s a line of free-standing concrete blocks, roughly pyramid shaped and about a foot high. Well yesterday they had been blown all over the place by the wind, waves and flying pebbles.

Anyway, that was yesterday and today is just so different it’s hard to believe. Almost no wind, bright sunshine, and according to the car, 17 degrees centigrade. Went for a longish run of just under 10k, in just under 1hr 9m. Average 6m 58s per kilometer. Found a very pleasant path that runs through the woods on Langdon Hill, but also tried a shortcut back which turned out to be an ascent of a grassy hill with an incline of about 45 degrees. Not going that way again. Oh, and as I was running past the farm at Upcot (Upcot Farm?), I saw a field of new-born lambs. Now I know the weather is milder down here and spring comes early, but mid-November??

Short run probably Thursday, then Boscombe 10k Sunday. Haven’t received a number in the post, so guess I collect it on the day.

Endurancelife hits Charmouth

7 11 2009

So there I was, trotting along minding my own business, enjoying the sunshine and trying to avoid the muddy bits, when a stream of seriously fit blokes came bounding past.  Polite to a man (person?) they all said ‘Good Morning’ or the like. Turns out it’s part of the Endurancelife Coastal Trail Series. I did come across the details a while back when I was looking for local races, but since then it slipped my mind. The reason that I didn’t enter it was that it was £30 to run in the 10k race! There’s also a half-marathon for £40, or the full banana for £50. Not sure what you get for the money apart from mud and sore legs. I mean the glorious scenary is free. When I drove back down into the village I spotted their base. The competitor car park was the field they normally use for the open-air market, and it was full of cars! Must have been 200 to 300 maybe. So that’s 250ish x £40ish which equals £10,000ish. Hmm, maybe I should be looking into this.

Oh well, I managed a decent medium length run of 7.28km in 52m 11s including two decent sized hills. Total ascent 332m. I was looking for a less muddy route (NB. Mud-free is impossible round here), and did ok until the final few hundred yards when it got to that point where you’re creeping along the thin grass verge with one hand clinging onto the barbed-wire fence. Try and cut that bit out next time. If anyone’s interested, I’ve put it on Garmin Connect. Personally I wouldn’t bother.

Boscombe 10k in two weeks, aim to beat the 53m from last week. No more races after that for a while, but in the new year might do the Southbourne 10k on 7th March (described as fast and flat), and the Portland ‘Round the Rock’ 10k on 2nd May. We’ll see.

Sunday long run, new PB

18 10 2009

Glad to say, looks like I’m still improving. Did the longer run today 9.15km with two big hills (total ascent on the run according to gadget is 438m) in 1hr 5m 4s, That’s just under two minutes off the time I did four weeks ago when I last did this loop. Have to say that like Wednesday conditions were ideal; cool and almost no wind. Didn’t even have to pass any dogs. Plus I wasted about 30s sat on my backside sorting out my trainer and sock. I think I wasn’t laced tight enough and that caused the sock to ruck up round my toes coming down from Golden Cap. It was really hurting so I had to stop and sort it out.

The two areas where I gained the most time were on the first halves of both climbs, if that makes sense. It’s like I can maintain a good pace for further up each hill before I run out of strength and revert back to the slower hill climbing pace. Looking forward to more improvements before next summer and The Challenge. Definitely on schedule I think.

Met an interesting guy yesterday at the Charmouth Literary Festival, John Bryant. He’s written a number of  books about the London Marathon, the history of the marathon, and the quest to break the four minute mile. He was also coach to Zola Budd! I think he’s run The Challenge in the past, have to tap him up for some coaching tips if I see him again.

Two weeks to Ilminster 10k, five to Boscombe 10k. Target for Ilminster is still 55m. If I can do that I’ll count it as a modern day PB on the grounds that I can’t remember my true PB from about eight years ago other than it was about 52m 30s!

I swallowed a fly, perhaps . . .

23 09 2009

Yeuch! You know what it’s like, bounding along, gob wide open like a Formula One air intake, and a particularly adventuresome gnat takes a liking to your larynx. It’s to far in to spit out, all you can do is give it a big gulp and try to forget it. I did briefly consider looking for a spider to go in after it . . .

Anyway, apart from that, the medium Wednesday morning run went well. Clocked it at 7.19km on the Gadget, 47m 2s, so 5 secs off my PB. I actually thought it might be more as I felt it was going so good. Interesting.

Counted as I went round: 2 cattle grids, 1 gate, 16 stiles and 5 other misc constrictions that slowed me down. No wonder the speed readout on the Gadget readout looks so wiggly.

Decided that my weekend run will be a bit different. Going to find some flat tarmac and see what pace I can keep up over 7 to 10km.

St Gabriels Loop

St Gabriels Loop

Saturday is PB day

5 09 2009

Well it is this time any way. Did the long five and a half mile Golden Cap loop with two big climbs in it in a new best time of 1hr 6m 46s.

It’s nice being in this improving phase, gradually getting my normal fitness back. It’ll get to be harder work once I’ve reached that basic fitness plateau before I start to work even harder in order to get quicker. I reckon that I need to shave another six minutes off this long run before next year, plus I also need to tack on the extra climb up Stonebarrow Lane.

So, no resting on laurals, need to keep at it. Aim to be back out for a short run Wednesday.